“Remember that the time of your infancy and youth, with all its freshness and newness, was also the time of some other people’s old age when the world seemed stale and joyless, when to them all that life seemed capable of yielding seemed exhausted , when nothing seemed to remain but to wither and die. Remember also that today if the world seems less bright than formerly, if the sun seems setting instead of rising, it seems now to the boy and girl of ten or fifteen as it did to you at that age.
“No person could hold his or her physical body and enjoy life who as they lived on lived in the past and refused to set or open their minds to the future. In so doing they accumulate more and more of the old and relatively lifeless thought, and this element materializes itself on the body. Their flesh, bone and blood then become an actual expression of the dead and inert spirit.” ~Prentice Mulford
Good Old Days
I have to admit that I had not looked at it this way before. So what I think of as “The Good Old Days” was a time that my parents and grandparents probably thought of as a terrible time with too much change and too little self-discipline. And what me and others think of as the bad times of today, young people now will talk about these Good Old Days in thirty or forty years. At least that is how it has worked for at least the last few centuries.
Good Day Exceptions
We don’t always think the old days were the good days, however. I don’t think many would consider the time of either of the World Wars as good days. The times of major plagues, droughts, floods, etc. are also not generally considered good old days. Yet even with those things, some will say that is certain ways they were still better than today. And while they may be correct, that is not really why they say it.
Good Days Defined
While one can argue that things are indeed getting worse all the time, historical evidence doesn’t back that up. We complain about an unfair justice system, but not too long ago people could be forced with torture to confess to crimes they didn’t commit. They would confess just to make the torture stop. And peasants could be arrested just because a royal person said they did wrong—no evidence needed.
We complain about the corporate medical system of today that seems more interested in selling drugs than in curing anything. Yet we can be cured from many illnesses that killed our ancestors.
I could list other examples, but I think that gets the point across. With the exception of climate change, almost everything has actually improved in the last few centuries.
It is simply the attitude of youth that makes things seem good, while the attitude of the elderly is that they are not so good anymore. Think about it. While the adults are watching the news and getting more and more depressed at what they hear, the kids are laying games and having fun. Everything is new and interesting to the young.
It isn’t that we should be ignorant of what is happening around us, but we can’t let it get too us.
Making Good Days Happen
Like those kids, we need to have fun and escape from our constant worrying. Not just because worrying doesn’t fix the problems, but because worrying actually tends to attract to us the very things we worry about!
There are some who say that we shouldn’t interfere in what is happening in the world at all. That getting involved just causes us to become attached to material things and concepts. But that isn’t always true. It is possible to fight injustice without sinking into it. We can end world hunger without becoming materialistic. And we can do that while still having good days like the children do. And instead of dwelling on whats wrong, work on spreading what is right and just.